Tuesday, June 12, 2012

DAY 11 in ICU...DAY +27 POST BMT...

June 12th (3:30pm)

Andrew remains sedated, on a ventilator, on dialysis (crt), on antibiotics, steroids and array of other meds. Andrew's bilirubin level has gone up yet again today.  The ultrasound results were unremarkable.  The liver hasn't increased in size.  Andrew has been getting steroids to treat possible gvhd of the liver. But with the steroids, there is a risk of infection.  The best way to diagnose what is going on with Andrew's liver is to get a liver biopsy.  The biopsy can be done two ways.  One, the most risky of the two, is to biopsy through the skin, which can cause bleeding and in Andrew's case with his low blood pressure issue, this is not an option at this point.  Two, the preferred method, is through the carotid artery in the neck.  An interventional radiologist can use a catheter to reach the liver, with bleeding a less likely a problem.  The problem is that Andrew's carotid artery is accessed by the dialysis machine, so we will need to wait.
Andrew's fluid removal was good until today, when they had to dial the removal rate back due to Andrew's blood pressure getting dangerously low, so the biopsy will have to wait until more fluid is removed and the CRT machine stopped.  His chest x-ray showed no new improvement.  

The doctors say that he remains stable but is critical.  He has not gotten worse, but he hasn't gotten better. 
He is in the fight of his life.  Please pray for complete recovery.  But pray specifically for:

-Andrew's fluid removal will begin again and that the fluid will dissipate to the point where he can get off dialysis, which will allow for a liver biopsy.

-Pray for a clear cut liver diagnosis so the Doctors can treat it properly.

-Pray for lungs which are still compromised with the fluid build up.

-Pray for his kidney function to come back to normal and not dependent on dialysis.

-Pray for Andrew's mental state.  I can't imagine what is going on as he has been sedated for 11 days.  Is it fear?  Is it calm?  Is it both?  Pray that Andrew would be at peace and dreaming wonderful peaceful an serene dreams.  Pray that he can hear the encouragement spoken to him by the healthcare providers and his family.

***Keep praying for Connor.  Pray that his donor cells would start engrafting quickly and copiously!  Pray for a favorable test results showing Connor's donor cells are doing it's job.  Pray for Stephanie and Steve as they are anxious during this stressful time.  Please goto Connor's blog for more info:

I must admit I was super anxious this morning.  I actually thought about Andrew not making it.  But ever time I think these thoughts, it seems the Holy Spirit intervenes to remind me that God is in control.  God is indeed my fortress and shield in this time of utter stress.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change and though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea; though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains quake at its swelling pride. Selah. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold. Selah. Psalm 46:1-3,7

(Psalms 30:2 NKJV) O LORD my God, I cried out to You, And You healed me (Andrew).

I just want to remind you if you think you are having a bad day, to think about coming to Children's to take a stroll around the ICU and the Oncology ward.  Things will soon be put into perspective.  If you have children, hug them today and say that you love them.  Tell your spouse or significant other that you appreciate and love them.   Do not take things for granted.  Take what God has given you and give thanks!


I do have a favor to ask of you.  I ask that you not only pray for Andrew and our family, but to leave a comment or so reminding us that you are doing so and any other words of encouragement or what not. Speak your heart and let us know that Andrew's Army is strong!


  1. Joe,

    I am praying for Andrew, his doctors, you, and your family. My family will all pray together for Andrew as we gather together for dinner tonight. Love and best wishes,


  2. Please know that I have been and continue to pray for you all. Many times there are no words bc it's hard to know what to say, how to say it... I can't imagine the heartbreak and desperation moment by moment you both are experiencing. Please know God does see it ALL and wastes nothing. Praying for healing and recovery, for peace and strength for each other - soon!

  3. Joe,
    I'm continuing to pray for Andrew and sending you all support, strength and love....

  4. Still praying for all of you! Matt. 6:25-26 'Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life....Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? God knows exactly what Andrew needs right now even while he is sedated, stay strong in the Lord.

    Rose Mary Duval

  5. Hi Joe,

    I rememeber when James was ventilated on life support I prayed that God would send his Angels to protect him whilst he slept (when I was a little girl my mum used to pray that Angels would watch over me whilst I slept). As I sat there in the intensive care unit watching my very sick baby I had a clear picture of two angels standing at each end of James' bed, their heads bowed over him and their wings outstretched sheilding him. God gave me this picture, I'm sure. It was such a comfort to me to know that His angels were watching over him. I know Angels will be protecting Andrew in the same way they protected James, and whispering beatiful, heavenly song into his ears as he sleeps.

    With love and prayers


  6. Joe, many times each day I pray for your family and for Andrew to remain strong and to continue to win this fight against cancer. Always, always thinking of you all.

    Wishing you love and comfort and peace and strength,

  7. Joe... We are praying!! I think about Andrew all the time and know that we are constantly consumed with thoughts of him and your family. Much love brother...I know God is holding you up. Even through your pain, you have been an encouragement. God bless....

  8. Andrew is constantly in my prayers. I always ask our God to display his utmost love and strength for Andrew. Joe, remain faithful and strong!


  9. Joe -- we haven't seen each other in over 20 years, but I think of you and your family daily and pray for Andrew. May the day come soon when all of these prayers are answered.


  10. Joe, even though we don't know you personally, we pray as a family for cousin Connor and his friend, Andrew on a daily basis. More specifically, I sometimes pray that the Spirit continue to convict you, Andrew, and your family that our lives are just specks on the line of that this will give you a peace that surpasses any secular understanding. God bless you guys!

  11. Joe, Andrew and your family are constantly in my thoughts and prayers. It is evident that God is working in your lives and I look forward to seeing what God will do to bring healing to Andrew and your family! Take heart!

  12. i have been praying all the request as u update the blog i also wanted to let u know that i am shaving my head coompletly and it will stay that way tell andrew comes out of icu

  13. Joe, we are praying for Andrew and your family. Even the little ones are praying for Andrew by name. Thank you for your sharing your pain and joy with us through this blog. John 9:1-3.

    Joe, Peggy, Noah and Naomi Chun

  14. Praying for Andrew... Please be strong. Our God is good and is watching over him. Will continue to pray...

  15. Joe, I know I don't know you well but I have followed and prayed for months now. I pray in the awesome name of Jesus, the great Healer, the great Redeemer, Teacher and Counselor that Andrew will be well again, that you will have peace, that Andrew will live to be a great testimony to Gods greatness and power...amen... From Jen Davis (Carani)

  16. Danielle VickersJune 12, 2012 at 8:48 PM

    Raising Andrew and your family up in constant prayer. You all are so strong and I know you will make it through these tough times. I think of Andrew often and my heart goes out to him and all of you. May you feel a peace and calmness surrounding you as you are reminded that the Lord is holding you all in His arms.

  17. Joe - I don't know you, but learned of your family's plight via a friend's Facebook post. I am praying for Andrew and all of you daily.

    God bless!


  18. Joe, you do not know me but I have been following Andrew for awhile. I wanted to let you know that we have been praying for you guys as well as other prayer requests you have asked for. We will continue to pray with and for your family as well as Conners family. You have a big group praying for you in Southern Illinois! With love, April Imhoff

  19. Dear Joe and family,

    I'm Al and Jenn's friend, Mikael, who spent a Christmas or two with you years ago. I'm praying for Andrew's recovery and that G-d gives him and his loving family the strength to persevere and get through this.


  20. I don't know you, but I am praying for your sweet boy and all of those that love him dearly. I believe that God has him wrapped in his arms while he is sedated, opening Andrew's eyes to the good and loving warmth that surrounds him and his family. I believe Andrew will come back from critical illness and enlighten all of us about the beauty and blessings that will embrace us all in our final resting place. May God continue to hold all of you in his loving arms.

    This may sound random, but please remember to eat and drink - I know how easy it is to forget/set aside the basic needs during times of intense devastation and sadness, but please take care of yourselves as well. If food is not palatable, go for a smoothie with some protein powder or tofu. You need nourishment, too, to continue on this road. Andrew is going to need you even more when he begins to come out of this and realize what has happened.

    Praying for you All,

    Amy D.

  21. Dearest Andrew, Joe, Jennifer and Girls,
    Please know that we continue to talk to God, Jesus and Hail Mary at the top of every hour, pleading for many improvements and clarity and peace. Our prayer group grows steadily via neighbors, friends and family each day. The strength you have all had since the beginning has deepened each day and SHALL CARRY YOU THROUGH. Andrew, you are working so hard; be proud and carry on strong.
    With all our love, Lynn Frank Lauren Kendall
    PS Kendall rocks: nine years old, and she is our official hourly time setter with her digital Timex

  22. I'm praying for Andrew, and especially for his kidney, since my daughter's had kidney problems and I can picture in my head just what Andrew's kidney needs to do to get better, and for his lungs, since my daughter's been hospitalized multiple times for pneumonia too, so I can also picture what the lungs need to do. I also wanted to tell you about a time when I was sedated with some kind of powerful combination of drugs, and no one thought I could hear them, but I could hear every word; it was while I was in labor with my daughter. I just couldn't communicate that I could hear them, but I heard everything people said to me crystal clear! That's why I'm sure that Andrew can hear you, and here's what I think Andrew is thinking: "I can hear you guys, ok!" He is probably anxious to get better, too, and is probably also bored. When I slept on the sedation, still in labor but after painkillers had been given (because sedation and pain killers are definitely not the same and not replacements for each other as far as the patient is concerned, although some hospital staff seem to think they are, because some hospital staff seem to think that if you're too sedated to cry then you're not in pain) it was the most peaceful deep sleep without any dreams. I hope Andrew has periods where he seems very peaceful, not twitching, and if he does, I would think that he's sleeping well at those times. I have advice for dealing with the antibiotics, too. When my dad was on a feeding tube in his long hospitalization, and on antibiotics for pneumonia, we insisted that the hospital give him acidophilus in the tube in between antibiotic treatments. The acidophilus is the good bacteria in yogurt, but you can also get it in juice at any health food store or Whole Foods/Fresh Fields. You'll probably have to bring it in yourself (I don't understand why hospitals don't carry it; in the future I'm sure they will). If you give Andrew this, it will prevent C.Diff. from forming in his intestines, which is a big hospital superbug. C.Diff is not killed by hand sanitizers, only by washing hands with soap and water, which is another reason why C.Diff. is so prevalent in hospitals nowadays. You'll encounter some initial resistance from the hospital - we always have at my dad's and children's hospitalizations as well - but once you get it started, the nurses and doctors will realize the benefits to Andrew and keep it up. Once we got Highland Park Hospital to give my dad the liquid acidophilus, all the hospitals that treated him afterwards for the next half-year kept it up.

  23. Hi. I am Stephanie and Steve's next door neighbor. They told us about Andrew when you guys first met many months ago, I have been following and praying. Our entire neighborhood is praying and we have all included Andrew along with Connor to our prayer groups at church. Please know that you will find the strength to get through another day. My heart is aching so much for your family. You have been through so much , it must seem so unfair. God chose you to be Andrew's parents... And you should be so honored. Thanks for the updates... Us on the outside appreciate them a lot.
    Many prayers for all that you asked for...
    Teri danstrom

  24. Joe -- I am reminded of YOUR OWN WORDS today, which are very powerful! "So I ask my friends, have you reached the "crossroad" yet? Are you living life under the pain and encumbering affects of anxiety and fear? You have a choice in what road you choose. When the crap hits the fan, the world says to take a vacation, go shopping, be selfish and do whatever except face the real cause of the despair.. My walk and faith in Jesus Christ has been a road less traveled by many, but it has been the difference in my life. This road has given me peace which transcends all human understanding as it is written in the Book of Phillipians chapter 4 verses 6 and 7, especially in this difficult season of life where I am broke, have a son facing an uncertain future. One of my favorite quotes from Robert Frost from his piece titled The Road Not Taken seems to sum up how I feel:
    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I —I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference."
    Andrew is STABLE, which is good. The waiting is excruciating, but I truly believe Andrew will recover from all that ails him!
    Stay true to what is in your will never mislead you. I pray for strength and patience for Andrew and the entire Park family.

  25. Praying over these specific requests right now.
    "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest." - Jesus


  26. Andrew's Army is strong, and we are praying!

  27. We are praying for Andrew everyday.
    You are not alone...
    "And he said, the things which are impossible with men are possible with God" (Luke 18:27).

  28. Hyung,

    Andrew has come strong and made it through the long journey and many challenges to this date. I have no doubt, as our God is in control of everything, that Andrew will overcome this critical stage soon. I belive that God has a mega plan for Andrew in the future showing God's love, care, and work to people in this world through Andrew. We continue to keep Andrew and you guys in our prayers.


  29. The entire Park family is in my prayers, especially our dear oppa . I love you all. I will continue to pray and keep you in my thoughts through these tough times.


  30. Joe,
    I am not sure if you remember me, but I was Andrew's 1st grade teacher at Holmes. We met up again at Hinsdale Central during Andrew & Hanna's (my daughter) Freshman book day. It was such a joy to see you & your family that day & yet I was deeply saddened by the news about Andrew. He has since stayed in my thoughts & I would frequently ask Hanna about Andrew & his condition. She, along with so many other students were quick to inform me about his journey & strength throughout the past couple years. I just want you to know that my daily prayers are earmarked for the Park family. I have no idea what you must be going through & above all, what Andrew is undergoing. I pray for your faith & commitment to Andrew's recovery & for Andrew to find peace & comfort in what must be dreadful. Your words & actions are that of an amazing, caring & loving father ~ thanks for helping me put my own life into perspective. Give Andrew a squeeze for me!
    Love & prayers with you all, Laura Scurto

  31. Joe,

    I will pray for Andrew that he will continue to be blessed and held by God's all amazing healing hands. I will continue to pray that your family feels the love and presence of the Lord. Joe, you have been such an inspiration to me. My faith journey has been like the game "Shoots and Ladders"...somtimes I climb the ladder and am so strong in my faith and then I land on the shoot and slide down from being so wrapped up in everyday life...forgetting to give God time, thanks & praise. Thank you for sharing your faith and courageous journey with all of us.

    Blessings & Love,
    Beth Tegtmeier

  32. You don't know me but I have been praying every night for Andrew. Tonight at prayer time, it was late and everyone only got "one prayer" tonight... it was for Andrew - from me and from my children.

  33. Joe,
    I continue to pray for Andrew and your entire family. May all of you find the strength, peace and comfort you need. Trust in god. He will help you through this. May God wrap Andrew in his healing arms.

    Angela Corso Gatz

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